Down in the heart of Detroit, people on pistas rolling silver boules at cochonnets caught my attention the other day, mostly because I don’t know what any of those things are.
Turns out, it was the Detroit Petanque Club meeting as they do everyday from noon to 1 o’clock in Cadillac Square, right next to Campus Martius Park. I watched them play Petanque (pronounced: pa-TONK) for a little bit, but I only picked up a few of the rules. It’s a lot like bocce ball, except the balls (called “boules”) are silver and a little smaller. You stand inside a ring and roll the boule at a cochonnet (a small wooden ball).
The courts where the game is played are called pistas, and apparently the Detroit Petanque Club is in such good standing with the city that a few of them were put in when the Campus Martius area was reworked a few years back. To the untrained eye, it looked like tightly packed gravel.
As I was getting ready to leave after I watched and took a few pictures, the guy in this photo invited me to play a few games. Any time, he said, they’re there every lunch hour. Now, I didn’t point this out to him, but give me about a half-hour to develop a touch, and I predict I will absolutely dominate. Stay tuned to the Kage for details.
To read more about the DPC, click here.